2011 STACK Holiday Video Game Gift Guide: Shooters

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In the current issue of STACK magazine, you'll find our 2011 Holiday Gift Guide, and it's loaded with info on the best new video games (we know that's what you really want). High school student-athletes: look for the mag in your school's gym or weight room over the next few weeks. Meantime, we'll provide a breakdown of the best holiday games by genre on STACK Gamer.

First up, here's everything you need to figure out which shooter is right for you.

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Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3

In the current issue of STACK magazine, you'll find our 2011 Holiday Gift Guide, and it's loaded with info on the best new video games (we know that's what you really want). High school student-athletes: look for the mag in your school's gym or weight room over the next few weeks. Meantime, we'll provide a breakdown of the best holiday games by genre on STACK Gamer.

First up, here's everything you need to figure out which shooter is right for you.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3
Out on:
XBox 360, PS3

The latest installment of COD is one of the most-played games on both Xbox Live and the PlayStation Network. In MW3, you get the same over-the-top action sequences that fans expect in the campaign, as well as an addictive multiplayer mode, which has been the franchise's biggest draw for years. Plus, all your friends are already playing it. Factor in the new Survival mode, and it's a must-have.

Ask for it if: You love playing multiplayer online and you like intense action sequences.

Battlefield 3
Out on: XBox 360, PS3

For nearly every gamer who swears by Call of Duty, another prefers the Battlefield series. Arguably, it's more realistic than the better-known COD games, mostly due to dramatically improved lighting effects and fully destructible environments. The Frostbite 2 engine makes it possible for bits and pieces of your cover (like the corner of a building) to chip away during a firefight. Such details make a big difference. The multiplayer mode of Battlefield 3 deploys vehicles in giant, open spaces. It feels like you're in a big battle rather than a small skirmish. Drive a tank or attack on foot. It's up to you.

Ask for it if: You prefer your military games as realistic as possible or you're a graphics nerd.

Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary
Out on:
XBox 360

If realistic military shooters aren't your thing, and you'd rather gun down evil aliens, pick up the new Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary , which is the original Halo story remastered in HD. The Halo series includes Halo 3, Halo ODST and Halo: Reach—all quality titles worth your attention. The original Halo spawned a generation of FPS games and it's a classic.

Ask for it if: You're more into sci-fi than super realism, or you just like shooting aliens.

Gears of War 3
Out on: XBox 360

The Gears trilogy concludes with the best game to date in the series. Like its two predecessors, Gears 3 is a cover-based third-person shooter. You use the game's environment as cover when you encounter enemies. Simple gameplay mechanics has become the Gears trademark. The game feels chunky, as always, but its speed has picked up enough to be noticeable. Not only is multiplayer reworked, but also Horde mode gets an upgrade. If you loved either of the first two Gears games, you owe it to yourself to try Gears 3.

Ask for it if: You're into post-apocalyptic movies, gore or comically-oversized weapons. Or muscles.

Uncharted 3
Out on: PS3

Uncharted 2 was one of the best games on PS3, and the third edition goes a step further. Uncharted 3 expertly combines multiple genres into one game. It's a third-person cover-based shooter, but it's much more than that. It's like an old platformer. You'll find yourself climbing buildings and looking for different ways to approach each battle. The story is part National Treasure, part Indiana Jones; and the cinematics are incredible. The game whips the camera around like you're watching a movie. If you haven't tried it, now's the time.

Ask for it if: You're into mysteries or you ever tried looking for buried treasure.

Photo:  ign.com


Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock

Topics: MILITARY | XBOX 360 | CALL OF DUTY | MULTIPLAYER